Halong - A site for archaeologists
In 1937, the accidental discovery of the first artifact by a glass craftsman in Ngoc Vung Island in Halong is later recognized as one of the cradles of mankind.
During that time, Vietnam was still a French colony; the discovery made archaeological enthusiasts came to Vietnam to exploring the ancient human civilization. From that time, a lot of discoveries has been found, in the Halong coastal area, such as thousands of antiques like stone tools, ceramic receptacles, stone jewelry and human’s bones, all dated back to Neolithic age.
After the liberation of Northern Vietnam in 1945, Vietnamese and Soviet archaeologists started working together. In 1960, an exploration crew found pieces of wherry of the ancient apes, and a lot of copper arrows, which are belong to Hung Kings period (from 2879 to 258 BC). The results from all of searches were clear evidences of an ancient civilization in Halong Bay dated back 3,500-5,000 years ago.
From 1960 until now, archaeologists have expanded their research to 40 sites in Halong and found strong evidences to prove that an even older civilization existed in Halong Bay area, not just 3-5 millenniums ago, but back to 18,000 - 7,000 years BC. Ancient people used to live scattered in the area of Halong Bay, Bai Tu Long Bay, Me Cung Cave, Tien Ong Cave, and Thien Long Cave. Collected artifacts such as eatable sea snails and rude working tools proved that people here lived mainly on fishing, collecting sea-snails and oysters, digging roots and bulbs. The most recent discovering was in 2006, when important antiques of Trong Dong Civilizations were found, including cavemen’s bones, stone axe, ceramic pieces, mollusk deposits used to make foods and jewelry.
Archaeological researches have been conducted restlessly in Halong Bay to decipher all the found artifacts from the ancient civilizations existed in Halong Bay. From all the evidences, archaeologists say that Halong Bay is one of many cradles of humankind.